Breaking News: Kim Gardner Has Resigned – Watch
St. Louis Circuit Attorney Kim Gardner resigned on Thursday, May 4, 2023, effective June 1. Gardner’s resignation comes after a tumultuous tenure plagued by allegations of mismanagement and chronic staffing issues.
Gardner, a Democrat, was elected in 2016 as the first African American woman to hold the office of St. Louis Circuit Attorney. She quickly made headlines for her progressive policies, such as her decision to not prosecute certain low-level offenses. However, she also faced criticism for her handling of high-profile cases, such as the acquittal of former St. Louis police officer Jason Stockley in the shooting death of Anthony Lamar Smith.
In recent months, Gardner’s office has been under fire for its handling of several cases, including the mistrial of a man accused of killing a police officer. In addition, Gardner has been accused of mismanagement and nepotism in her office.
In February 2023, Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt filed a lawsuit seeking to remove Gardner from office. Schmitt alleged that Gardner had committed misconduct, including failing to follow the law and mishandling cases.
Gardner has denied the allegations against her. However, the lawsuit put her tenure in jeopardy and led to calls for her resignation from both Democrats and Republicans.
Then in late April, a St. Louis judge lowered the boom on Gardner, writing that her office was a “rudderless ship of chaos”:
“Describing Gardner’s office as “a rudderless ship of chaos,” [St. Louis Circuit Judge Michael Noble] held that there was sufficient evidence to find that Gardner and Assistant Circuit Attorney Chris Desilets had acted with “intentional disregard for the judicial process” and announced that he would be appointing a special prosecutor to pursue a case of “indirect criminal contempt” against them both.”
In the end, Gardner decided to resign rather than face the possibility of being removed from office by the courts. Her resignation is a victory for those who have been critical of her performance as St. Louis Circuit Attorney.
It is unclear who will replace Gardner as St. Louis Circuit Attorney. The process to select a replacement will begin soon.
St. Louis Circuit Attorney Kim Gardner resigns, effective June 1 https://t.co/HJyTuqepIc
— FOX2now (@FOX2now) May 4, 2023